Micro-/Nanotechnology

The Stars and Stripes: Advances in Non-Spherical Nanoparticles

Scientists who are interested in the latest progress in non-spherical noble metal nanoparticles will probably appreciate the new review articles by Tapan K. Sau and Andrey L. Rogach. These comprehensive articles cover the whole range from fundamental principles of particle shape evolution to the state-of-the-art applications in spectroscopy, imaging and analytics.

In “Nonspherical Noble Metal Nanoparticles: Colloid-Chemical Synthesis and Morphology Control”, the authors focus on the fundamental aspects of shape adjustment of noble metal nanoparticles. This includes an overview over synthetic strategies, detailed discussions of nanoparticle growth mechanisms, and a critical analysis of the scope of present characterization methods.

The anisotropy of non-spherical nanoparticles leads to novel properties and therefore to new potential applications, as discussed in “Properties and Applications of Colloidal Nonspherical Noble Metal Nanoparticles”. Herein, the authors present examples of how the crystallographic facets of non-spherical particles can significantly enhance their catalytic and chemical properties. They also illustrate in detail how the optical properties of the particles can be tuned over a broad spectral range by adjusting their morphology, and how this may have a strong impact on applications such as cellular imaging, label-free biosensing and photothermal therapy.

“The bottom-up colloid chemical synthesis has emerged as a powerful and economical design tool for morphology control in metal nanoparticles”, says Professor Rogach, who joined the City University of Hong Kong in 2009. “Anisotropic features associated with non-spherical morphologies of metal nanoparticles offer numerous innovative potentials for technological applications, which are bound to evolve rapidly as more and more particles with well controlled morphologies become available.”

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